The important thing is that great business journalism is going strong in both new and old forms and media. In this volume, the point is forcefully driven home by Zach Carter and Ryan Grim’s X ray of the Washington debate on bankcard swipe fees for Huffington Post and by Jesse Eisinger and Jake Bernstein’s expose of crimes and misdemeanors at Merrill Lynch for ProPublica, which won the first Pulitzer Prize awarded to a piece that never appeared in print. Morgan Housel’s deconstruction of bubble-era policymakers “Greenspan, Rubin, and a Roomful of Hypocrites,” The Motley Fool) obviously represents the tip of a huge iceberg of amazing online economic commentary and analysis.

It’s not going overboard to say that great business writing is the vital link between the public and the institutions that shape our economic lives. That’s why we’re proud to present Best Business Writing 2012 and even prouder to do it now when the economic currents are so complex and the stakes are so high.

And besides, these are just such great reads. Thanks for picking us up.

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Dean Starkman Dean Starkman runs The Audit, CJR's business section, and is the author of The Watchdog That Didn't Bark: The Financial Crisis and the Disappearance of Investigative Journalism (Columbia University Press, January 2014). Follow Dean on Twitter: @deanstarkman.